WATCH: Crossing Healthcare Mobile Unit

WATCH: Crossing Healthcare Mobile Unit

August 14th, 2019- Crossing Healthcare is partnering with DPS 61 for the school year providing a mobile unit for student services such as physicals, vaccinations, health screenings, treatment of minor illnesses and injuries, health education and promotion, nutrition counseling, behavioral health counseling, and dental.

LISTEN: Gary Geisler’s “Missing Woodstock”

LISTEN: Gary Geisler’s “Missing Woodstock”

August 13th, 2019 – Local attorney Gary Geisler hosted an event at the Decatur Public Library called “Woodstock.” Geisler, who has been practicing law since 1977, Became interested in the event as it celebrates the 50th anniversary, created a movie called “Missing Woodstock” that he showed to the public. Geisler has done several events at the library and is a volunteer in the Local History Room. If you missed the event, there will be a free showing of his short film at the Avon Theater on Saturday at 11am. To hear the full podcast with Geisler, go to NowDecatur.com

LISTEN: Industrial Job Skills Training Program Graduation

LISTEN: Industrial Job Skills Training Program Graduation

August 12th, 2019- Richland Community College celebrated its 10 graduates for the Industrial Job Skills Training Program. The skills course focused on a foundation of day to day function and interactions, whether it be work at home or just out in about within the community. A special congratulations to recent DPS graduates who also completed the course Antwone BrownTreytel Griffen-Johnson, Chandler Phillips, and Fredia Ryan.
 

Decatur Hosts Illinois Alliance of Community Foundations

Decatur Hosts Illinois Alliance of Community Foundations

August 9, 2019 –  Decatur is the host of the Alliance of Community Foundation Directors, giving our local community foundation a chance to highlight the numerous philanthropic partnerships in Decatur.  20 groups and foundation from around the state are here for the 3 day conference.  Natalie Beck – President of the Community Foundation of Macon County says it’s a chance for everyone to come together and share best practices.  

The conference is held quarterly and is hosted by a different community in the state.  

Macon County Area Contributing to Record Economic Growth in Illinois

Macon County Area Contributing to Record Economic Growth in Illinois

August 6th, 2019 – The Illinois Office of Tourism announced both international and domestic travel expenditures reached $41.7 billion in 2018 which is a $2 billion boost to the state’s economy since 2017. Macon County contributed to the state’s added economic domestic growth, with $155.19 million in travel expenditures (a 3.4% increase) and $2.95 million in local tax revenue (a 2% increase). More than 5,200 jobs were created across the state as a result of visitor spending, with 2.6% of them in Macon County. Teri Hammel, Executive Director for the Decatur Area Convention & Visitors Bureau says, “Macon County looks forward to attracting visitors as we continue to work hard to develop the region as a tourist destination”. 

Governor Pritzker Signs Bill to Help Medicaid

Governor Pritzker Signs Bill to Help Medicaid

August 6th, 2019 – A bipartisan group of Illinois state lawmakers joined Gov. J.B. Pritzker to celebrate the signing of a bill they say will save taxpayers money on Medicaid costs, one of the largest items in the state budget. With a backlog of more than 95,000 Medicaid patients, state Sen. Heather Steans, D-Chicago, said the signing of Senate Bill 1321 Monday will bring multiple state agencies together to better care for patients. “What we should be doing with care coordination is getting the right care at the right time at the place and making sure that patients get access to care when they need it and the right kind of coverage,” Steans said. One-in-four Illinois residents, or about 3 million people, use Medicaid, but there’s been a backlog of 95,000 cases. The governor’s office said the new law improves the timeliness of applications, redeterminations and payments to providers and decreases the number of Medicaid claim denials. It’s unclear how much the bill will save taxpayers, but supporters have said that making things more streamlined and transparent will go a long way. The measure passed unanimously in both the House and Senate.

WATCH: DMH Announces New President and CEO

WATCH: DMH Announces New President and CEO

July 24, 2019 – Drew Early, vice president of operations for Memorial Medical Center, will become the next president and CEO of Decatur Memorial Hospital, pending the successful completion of its affiliation with the Springfield-based health system.

The nonprofit hospital’s board of directors approved Early’s appointment at its meeting on July 23. He is expected to begin his new role on Oct. 1.

Watch the NowDecatur Interview with Drew Early:

 

Early has been with Memorial Health System and its flagship hospital, Memorial Medical Center, for 13 years. He has served as vice president of operations since December 2016, overseeing emergency and trauma services, environmental services, security, facilities design and construction, engineering, food and nutrition services and biomedical engineering.

Early earned his master of health services administration degree from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor in April 2006. He received a bachelor of science degree in health care systems administration from Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Michigan, in May 2004.

Early and his wife, Krista, live in central Illinois and will relocate to the Decatur area. They have three children.

Larry Altenbaumer, chair of the board of directors for Decatur Memorial Hospital, said board members, the medical staff and hospital leadership have had the opportunity to meet with Early over the last few weeks.

“We are excited about Drew’s selection as our new leader and look forward to introducing him to the community in the near future,” Altenbaumer said. “Drew represents the combination of leadership and experience that is critical to advancing our board’s commitment to positioning Decatur Memorial Hospital to continue to be a leader in providing a comprehensive scope of high-quality, community-based health care services.”

In May, Memorial Health System and Decatur Memorial Hospital announced they had reached an affiliation agreement, which would see the Decatur hospital become the eighth affiliate of the health system, pending regulatory approval.

“Over the years Drew has served at Memorial, he has done an outstanding job of leading and managing multiple service lines at the hospital and coordinating with the health system,” said Ed Curtis, president and CEO of Memorial Health System. “Drew’s solid health care management skills will help guarantee the successful integration of Decatur Memorial Hospital into our system.”

Early’s previous experience at Memorial Medical Center includes serving as administrator of cardiovascular and emergency services, director of business development and support, and administrative fellow for the health system. He began his career with Memorial in June 2006.

Early co-chairs the integration task force as Decatur Memorial Hospital transitions to an affiliate of Memorial Health System.

“I’ve had the privilege over the last few weeks to meet many of the people of Decatur Memorial Hospital,” Early said. “I’ve been impressed with the hard work everyone is doing to ensure their patients receive great care. I’m optimistic about what we’ll be able to accomplish together as we serve the health care needs of the people of Macon County and its nearby communities.”

Early will assume the role of Decatur Memorial Hospital president and CEO from Tim Stone, who is stepping down upon completion of the pending affiliation after 24 years of service. He joined the hospital in 1995 as chief operating officer and has served as president and CEO for the last four years.

“Drew’s engaging, collaborative and high-energy style will help our high-quality Decatur Memorial employees sustain and improve our performance, both from within the hospital and also through our affiliation with Memorial Health System,” Altenbaumer said.